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Samsung employees greet the audience at the company's Galaxy Unpacked launch event for the Galaxy Note 9 in New York on Aug. 9.   © Reuters
Company in focus

Samsung's Galaxy empire in crisis

Amid strong competition from Chinese rivals, smartphone leader looks for innovation

KIM JAEWON, Nikkei staff writer | South Korea

PYEONGTAEK, South Korea/NEW YORK -- Samsung Electronics CEO Koh Dong-jin looked pale when he accompanied his boss, Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, to a meeting with South Korea's finance minister in early August.

Koh, in charge of the company's IT and mobile communications sector, had a concerned look on his face and did not smile during the group photo session at the company's new semiconductor production base in Pyeongtaek, 65 km south of Seoul. The 57-year-old engineer, who has spent most of his three-decade career in developing mobile phones, is now under enormous pressure to turn around the company's smartphone business that has been struggling with challenges from Chinese competitors.

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